A couple of weeks before my anniversary seems appropriate to finally write about my Honeymoon. Especially considering that I started my first year of marriage looking like this:
And I’m ending it looking like this:
Kidding, on my actual anniversary, August 13th I’m hoping I will be holding a baby in my arms not still pregnant! We shall see!
I have no idea what time I went to bed the night of my wedding. All I know is the next morning I was up at 7 am throwing my things into a bag and running off to 8 am mass exhausted and hungover. I drank a lot of white wine at my reception! We then had to hop a plane to New York and onward to our first destination, Italy. When we made it Puglia, Italy in the beach like town, Polignano al Mare I’m pretty sure we just passed out for 12 hours.
This town is known for (besides being beautiful) the restaurant in the cave (which we sadly did not go to/ I’ll be back for one day) and the song Volare as the singer, Domenico Modugno, was born here. The writer of the song was inspired by Marc Chagall (one of my favorite artists) paintings of lovers whimsically flying in the air together. You will hear this song being played everywhere. I heard it on the airplane in a beautiful slow version and I heard it next to our hotel as a little train picks tourists up by the statue of Modugno and plays it throughout the town. It was adorable. I absolutely loved this little town.
Another endearing thing about this town (and the surrounding areas) are the poems that are written everywhere! Instead of ugly graffiti, the graffiti was just of poems written in Italian of course.
After exploring our little town we ventured to others and managed to catch a few during their festivals.
One of my favorite towns was Alberobello because of the Trulli. These little funny shaped homes that are now full of little artisan shops.
We also saw Lecce and Ostuni. I do wish we explored Lecce more, but again, one day I’d like to go back to Puglia. The food was amazing and everything was very affordable.
After Puglia we ventured North West to the Ligurian Coast. We stayed in a town called Rapallo.
I was so excited because I thought that one of my life long dreams would come to fruition by finally getting to walk around Cinque Terre. My husband rented this beautiful boat to take us there but within twenty minutes I was sea sick and curled into a ball. I did get to see Cinque Terre from the sea, but it was with one eye open and the other clenched shut trying to help myself not throw up. Ah well, maybe one day I’ll be back but with Dramamine.
The Ligurian Coast is home to one of my favorite dishes, Pesto! Only they make their Pesto a bit differently. They use a different type of pasta called, Trofie and they add cut up boiled potatoes and green beans. Now, when I make Pesto I throw in green beans as well (and also some spinach and walnuts to sneak in more health benefits for Ari).
My favorite town in the Ligurian Coast was Portofino. There are a lot of shops there and little hiking trails to take you to more sights. The Ligurian Coast was gorgeous and I enjoyed just laying by the infinity pool off of the cliffs with my new husband but it came time to explore new territory, Spain. We took a short flight over to Barcelona and I made it my mission to see all of Gaudi’s work! As a high school student I was obsessed with his architecture and how creative he was. The man truly thought out of the box and I loved it.
The Sagrada Familia was incredible. They have been building this for over 100 years and it is still not finished. It will be taller than any building in Barcelona but smaller than the tallest mountain- Gaudi did this in respect for God. We did not go into any of the structures though because of the lines and the money each one wanted. If I come back with my children I will make more of an effort to take them inside and let them learn, but I was having a lot of fun just exploring with Nick.
Spain is known for their Paella. We ate a lot of Paella in an effort to try them all (I think I make the best Paella though). I found that my favorite dessert was Crema Catalana. It’s like a creme brûlée.
Our favorite restaurant however did not sell crema catalana or paella but fresh plant centered foods, smoothies and juices. It’s called Flax and Kale and we went there every single day, sometimes twice a day for breakfast and lunch.
We both needed to detox and my body especially needed alkaline plant based food after eating my weight in pasta and drinking more glasses of wine then I had ever had in those previous 26 years of life.
After our stay in Barcelona in this really cool hotel I might add, that was more like a petit museum (the owner of the hotel also owned an Egyptian museum) we hopped on The Crystal Symphony for a Cruise.
Our first stop was Majorca/Mallorca. We went to a wine tasting there which was a lot of fun. Believe it or not I’ve never done a wine tasting before so I was very excited to have this experience. I loved our cruise! I also had never been on a cruise before, so that in itself was exciting for me and scary. One night I had to grip my bed while trying to fall asleep because of a storm at sea.
Our cruise also had tea time at 4 pm and I don’t think I missed one day of it!
Next stop Monaco. I woke up, the sun was shining and I had breakfast on the balcony and this sight to see. I was on Cloud Nine.
I loved Monaco. Nick and I walked around during the day and looked around at all of the shopping. I did not go into any casinos!
At night we went to a beautiful party at Grace Kelly’s Rose Ball and saw Andrea Bocelli sing. I cried, it was too much beauty and I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. As Nick’s grandfather would say, it was a happy cry.
Another tour that our cruise offered was to Eze, France. I did this tour solo because Nick was running all sorts of crazy errands that day. I missed my bus with the group (Nick’s fault) and had to take a taxi to Eze which was actually a great experience. I was able to ask the taxi driver all about Monaco, Grace Kelly and their citizenship (it’s quite hard to acquire citizenship there). He dropped me off to meet up with my group at the Fragonard perfumery. With no husband around I went crazy with souvenir shopping.
Eze was beautiful and hilly. It was quite the hike and I did it happily in my flip flops because I was just so happy to be there. All of the shops were so cute. I made sure to pick up quite a few toys for my Ari from all of the toy shops. As always the people in France were so kind. I get defensive when people say the French or Parisians are rude. I have never found this to be true.
After my relaxing solo adventure through Eze it was time for our last stop, Rome! I still make fun of Nick for this because he booked us at the scariest hotel! I don’t even want to get into all of the things wrong with this place! I was just so happy to wake up in the morning and just get hell up out of there into the city! I had not been back to Rome since I was 16 years old.
I kept trying to piece things back together for myself. It is such a romantic city and I loved rediscovering it again with my happily ever after. We stumbled upon the coliseum together, campo de’ fiori and met up with a couple of Nick’s cousins. We ended our trip with another party.
And that was our Honeymoon, finally recorded after almost coming full circle with our first year of marriage.